Sugriva Sends Shatabali and Others to the North


Sugreeva sends troops to north in search of Seetha. He gives an account of the snowy regions and provinces of northern side and asks them to search in the places of Yavana, Kuru, and Darads etc., civilizations. Sugreeva specially informs them about a divine province called Uttara Kuru and a heavenly mountain called Mt. Soma on which Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva make sojourn for its sacredness.

Chapter [Sarga] 43 in Detail

On sending his father-in-law, namely Susheshana, to westerly direction then the king of Vanara-s Sugreeva, spoke to a valorous Vanara named Shatabali. [4-43-1]

That knowledgeable and the powerful one among all monkeys, King Sugreeva, spoke words to Shatabala that are advantageous to himself, and beneficial to Rama as well. [4-43-2]

"Accompanied with a hundred thousand forest-dwelling monkeys of your kind, and also with all of your ministers who the sons of Yama, the Terminator, you have to proceed. [4-43-3]

"Oh, venturesome Shatabala, you scout out whole of the northern quarter that has snowy Himalayan mountains as its crown for the glorious wife of Rama. [4-43-4]

"Oh, enterprising Vanara-s, when this mission is complete and when we can effectuate a task agreeable to Rama, we will become debt-free and accomplished of our purpose. [4-43-5]

"Great-souled Raghava has indeed done a favor to us, isn't it. If there is reciprocation to that kind deed, our lives will become fruitful. [4-43-6]

"He who completes the deed of a requester, even though that requester has not rendered any help earlier, his life becomes fruitful. Then what is there to say again about him who has already received help from the requester? [4-43-7]

"Let all of you abide by such a thinking as you are the well-wishers of our well-being and welfare, and undertake your mission in such a way as to how Seetha can be found in your search. [4-43-8]

"On his part this Rama, who is the best on among men and the champion of enemies' fastnesses, is the estimable one for all beings, and his interests have indeed fell in with ours. [4-43-9]

"Let all of you with your assets of wisdom and valor rake over all of these impassable places, rivers, mountains and also their canyons. [4-43-10]

"There in the north, the provinces of Mleccha-s, Pulinda-s, that way Shurashena - Prasthala - Bharata - Kuru - Madraka - Kaambhoja - Yavana shall be scrutinized along with the cities of Shaka and Darada, and then search in Himalayas. [4-43-11,12]

"In the stands of Lodhra trees, Padmaka trees and in the woods of Devadaaru, or Deodar trees, Ravana is to be searched there and there, together with Seetha. [4-43-13]

"You to Soma hermitage, which is adored by the gods and Gandharva-s, and then you go to that great-peaked mountain named Mt. Kala. [4-43-14]

"On its cliffs, mountainsides and in caves the highly fortunate and impeccable wife of Rama shall be searched. [4-43-15]

"On going across that lordly mountain Kala, which great-mountain is impregnated with gold, it will be apt of you to go to the mountain named Sudarshana afterwards. [4-43-16]

"Latter there will be a mountain overspread with various birds and adorned with varied trees named Devasakha which is a sanctuary for birds. [4-43-17]

"Let Ravana be quested after in the segments of woods, at waterfalls, and even in caverns of that mountain, together with Vaidehi. [4-43-18]

"On crossing Mt. Devasakha, there is a vacant land to a span of hundred yojana-s all around, which is devoid of mountains, rivers and even trees, and discarded by all beings. [4-43-19]

"But you all will be overjoyed on traversing that hair-raising wasteland quickly and on attaining Mt. Kailash. [4-43-20]

"There is the delightful mansion of Kubera, which in shine will be like a silver cloud and processed with gold, and the Divine Architect Vishvakarma has constructed it. [4-43-21]

"Where an expansive lake is there, which is replete with lotuses and costuses, overrun by swans and partridges, and adored by throngs of Apsara-s, that is the place of Kubera, Deity for Wealth-Management. [4-43-22]

"The son of Sage Vaishravana and king of Yaksha-s, who is reverenced by all beings for he is the money giver, that fortunate king will be rejoicing there along with Guhyaka-s, viz., Yaksha-s. [4-43-23]

"Ravana shall be searched on Mt. Kailash, and even in the caves of nearby mountains which will be shining like moon, together with Vaidehi. [4-43-24]

"Thereafter on reaching Mt. Kraunca you shall cautiously enter into a highly impassable tunnel of that mountain to search Seetha. That tunnel, they say, is an un-enterable one. [4-43-25]

"In that tunnel great-souled sages reside at the request of gods, and those great-sages are similar to Sun in their resplendence and godly in their mien. Even then, you search for Ravana therein that tunnel. [4-43-26]

"Besides the main peak of Mt. Kraunca, its other peaks, terraces, crevices and midriffs shall be searched, far and wide. [4-43-27]

"The treeless Mt. Kaama and the abode of birds Mt. Maanasa are also to be searched, and there is no inlet for any being, let alone gods or demons. [4-43-28]

"You all have to search Mt. Kraunca inclusive of its mountainsides, grades, and its fringe mountains, and on moving away from that Mt. Kraunca, a mountain named Mainaaka is there. [4-43-29]

"The mansion of the demon Maya is there which is built by himself and that Mt. Mainaaka is to be searched out, inclusive of its crests, grades and caves. Thereabout the dwellings of horse-faced females, namely Kimpurusa-s, are there and you have to search them also. [4-43-30, 31a]

"On crossing over that province there is the hermitage adored by Siddha-s, the resolved-souls. There the sages, namely Siddha-s, Vaikhaanasa-s, and Vaalakhilyaa-s will be there. [4-43-31b, 32a]

"Then you venerate those sages with accomplished souls, whose asceticism alone has effaced their blemishes, and you may even humbly ask them after Seetha's whereabouts. [4-43-32b, 33a]

"There is the lake belonging to Vaikhaanasa sages, overspread with golden lotuses, and overrun with prosperous swans whose resplendence will be similar to the tender sun. [4-43-33b, 34a]

"The carrier elephant of Kubera known as Saarvabhauma will always be visiting that place along with she-elephants. [4-43-34b, 35a]

"Passing that lake there will be just sky which will be devoid of moon, or sun, or the clusters of stars, and it will be cloudless and noiseless. [4-43-35b, c]

"That place will be luminescent with the self-resplendence of godlike sages who have accomplished their asceticism and who are taking rest at that place, as if illuminated with innumerable rays of the sun. [4-43-36]

"On crossing over that province there is a deep flowing river named Shailoda. On both of its riverbanks bamboo brakes called as Keecaka-s will be there. Those bamboos will be enabling the movement of Siddha-s, accomplished souls, from one bank to the other. [4-43-37, 38a]

"Then there is the North Kuru, the dwelling of those who have achieved divine merit in their previous births and now born in that country to enjoy the fruits of that divine merit, thus that country itself is earmarked for meritorious beings. At that place, the lotuses in the rivers will be golden in hue. The runners and stalks of lotus plants bear lotus-leaves that are bluish like the bluishness of lapis lazuli. There will be thousands of such rivers filled with such plants in water, and with waters mingled with the waters of other lakes, and decorated with the thickets of red Costuses alongshore. [4-43-38b, 39, 40a]

"Everywhere that province shines forth with highly valuable leaves which will be in the hue of sapphires, with fibrils in the hue of gold, and with amazing thickets of blue costuses around lakes, which lakes will be surrounding that province with resplendence similar to sun. [4-43-40b, 41]

"There the sand dunes of deep flowing rivers are lumped together with incomparable pearls, highly valuable jewels and gold. [4-43-42]

"That province is with amazing mountains that are replete with every kind of jewel, golden in hue, splendorous like Ritual-fire, and they are intercalated into the deep flowing rivers. [4-43-43]

"There the trees will be eternally flowering and fruiting on which birds will be endlessly squawking. Their yield will be spilling forth meeting every delicacy with a divine smell, taste and touch. Some other best trees will yield clothing in numerous shapes. [4-43-44, 45a]

muktaa vaiduurya citraani bhuusanaani tathaiva ca |

"Some of the best trees will be yielding such of those adornments which will be vying with ornament made with pearls or with lapis gemstones, and suitable both for women and men. Like that, they can be worn happily in all seasons. Some other best trees will be yielding gemlike marvelous decorations applicable to noblesse. [4-43-45, 46]

"There are other trees that produce wooden-beds with astonishing upholsteries, and even garlands that will be attractively heartening, while some other trees will be yielding juices and foodstuffs that are relevant to highly choicest consumers. [4-43-47]

"The females of Uttara Kuru province will be handsome and youthful and they are rich by their attributes. There the radiantly bright celestials like Gandharva-s, Kinnara-s, Siddha-s, vidyaadharaa-s will be delighting along with their own females. [4-43-48b, 49]

"All the inhabitants of North Kuru have carried out good deeds in earlier births, hence they are accorded with paradisiacal pleasures now. All are engaged in passion, all of them live in pleasure and prosperity along with their youthful females. [4-43-50]

"The notes of vocal and instrumental music will be flowing out mixed with the peals of vivacious laughter, which will always come to ears in a heart-stealing manner for all beings. [4-43-51]

"There is none who is infelicitous and there is none who is friendly to untruthful ones, and in that province these heart-pleasing attributes of those blessed souls like rejoicing, festivity etc. will be enriching day by day. [4-43-52]

"On passing beyond that mountain in Uttara Kuru, there is a treasure trove of waters, namely vast of Northern Ocean, in the mid of which there is gigantic golden mountain named Mt. Soma. [4-43-53]

"Those who have gone to the sphere of Indra, and those who have gone to the sphere of Brahma can clearly see that lordly Mt. Soma, situated in the vast of ocean from the vast of heavens. [4-43-54]

"Even though that place is sunless it is comprehensible as if with sunshine, since it is illuminated with the resplendence of Mt. Soma itself, which will be irradiating that place as if with the resplendence of the Sun. [4-43-55]

"The God and Cosmic-Souled Vishnu and Shambhu or Shiva, an embodiment of eleven selfsame Souls, called Ekaadasha Rudra-s , and the god of gods Brahma who is surrounded by Brahma-Sages, will be sojourning on that Mt. Soma. [4-43-56]

"Under any circumstances you shall not go to the north of Kuru province as there is no other way out to follow, even for other beings like Daitya, Daanava, Yaksha, Gandharva-s, though they possess some extraordinary capabilities. [4-43-57]

"That mountain named Soma is an impassable one even for gods, and it will be apt of you to quickly return from there on seeing that mountain. [4-43-58]

“It is possible for the vanara-s to go only up to there, oh, best vanara-s, and we have no knowledge of those sunless and boundless realms available far and beyond. [4-43-59]

"You shall thoroughly search in all those provinces that are explained by me, and you have to make up your mind for searching in other places that are not referred by me. [4-43-60]

"Thereby, oh, Air-godlike and Wind-godlike Vanara-s, on your seeing the princess born in Videha kingdom, namely Vaidehi, an extremely desirable task for the sake of Dasharatha's son Rama is considered as done. Thereby it becomes a still privileged accomplishment even for me achieved through your efforts. [4-43-61]

"Thereafter, oh, fly-jumpers, when you with accomplished purpose and adored by me with heart-pleasing concessions, and when your enemies are silenced, you will rove over the earth with your friends and relatives and with your beloveds, also fostering your progeny." Thus Sugreeva said to the monkeys going to North. [4-43-62]

Thus, this is the 43rd chapter in Kishkindha Kanda of Valmiki Ramayana, the First Epic poem of India.

Sriman Moola Rama Vijayate